I try to make it my habit each week to post to Facebook and offer to pray for my Facebook friends. Interestingly this seems to be a bit of an oddity for a social network. Several have commented on how this practice is a good idea and how they will start doing it, for which I’m very glad.
So, to get to the heart of it, why do I do this? The truth is that I know my Facebook friends, but ultimately I don’t know most of them well. For example, I have hundreds of Facebook friends but only a small percentage of them are actually stored in my phone. So, essentially I’m throwing out a blanket offer to pray for family, friends, acquaintances, and (sometimes) strangers.
Some reading this may mistakenly think that I offer to pray for people to “open the door” to talk to them about Jesus, but that isn’t the reason at all. Maybe I’m not that spiritual, I don’t know, but I feel like that motivation would be like a bait and switch. Praying with hidden motivations feels wrong to me.
I offer to pray for my Facebook friends because I believe that God hears our prayers and loves us enough to answer them. I love to pray for my friends because I believe that by doing so I can effect change in their lives that would otherwise not take place. When I offer to pray for my Facebook friends and one asks for prayer that a flight will arrive on time, or that paperwork will be completed, or that a grieving family will be comforted, I am honored to pray through those things because I believe that God moves when His children ask it of Him.
I pray because prayer to God, who is unseen, effects change in the known world. I pray because I can improve someone’s life today by taking a brief moment and asking God to bless them. I pray because I believe that it is effective. I pray because God loves it when His children speak with Him and bring their needs to His feet.
And, I pray that you will pray for your friends as well.